Process Improvement Consultant

Top 10 Tasks every business owner should delegate

3 MIN READ

Marcus Buckingham, in the book “Go put your strengths to work,” said only 17% of the workforce believes that they use all of their strengths on the job. That means you’ve got over four fifths of the people in your employ seriously under utilising their skills right now. Imagine if you could clear your desk of some of that work and claim even 10% of the hours that you spend back. If you work for 50 or 60 hours a week, this could equate to five or six hours a day. And for many small business owners growing and scaling their business this is an excitingly real proposition.

Process Improvement Consultant

“If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together” African proverb

 

Delegating effectively to make full use of your employees strengths is a skill of its own, so let’s quickly look at 10 things that you as a business owner can do right now.

 

EMAIL MANAGEMENT: First of all, you can delegate email management, you do not need to have your hand on every single email. If you’re doing anything like the average work week, 20% – 28% of it is currently being spent on emails, so get rid of that stuff today.

 

PAYING BILLS: Bill paying is an important one. There may be some you really have to pay yourself, and there will be others you are happy to automate. But for one off payments, or bills you would rather have a person reviewing first, delegation is the answer. Pass it on to a trusted employee and clear that too. 

 

BOOKKEEPING INVOICING: This leads us to bookkeeping and invoicing. Make sure that you’re not the one doing the low level stuff, though you might want to be meeting with your accountant and keeping the big picture clear in your mind. 

 

CONTENT CREATION: Next, delegate your content creation. A quality piece of content takes, on average, one to six hours to create. You don’t need to be involved in all of that. Set up the objective then let someone else take it off your hands. 

 

SOCIAL MEDIA POSTING: This work in content creation can also extend to social media posting. Once you’ve got all of the content created and you need to distribute it, you could save yourself an hour or two each day by delegating. You don’t have to do the work yourself, and you’ll never miss a beat with your social media marketing if someone else has it covered.

 

DESIGN WORK: Are you still trying to do all your design work? This is best handled by specialists, if you’re not a graphic designer it may as well be the same as if you’re not an accountant. Just like you shouldn’t be doing your own tax, you shouldn’t be doing design work. Get it done well by someone trained and go with the stuff you’re good at. 

 

MANAGING THE SITE: Next, clean up. You don’t need to be managing your worksite yourself. Get onto people who can handle all of the cleaning, maintenance and lower level repairs while you do the work of growing your business. 

 

CALENDAR MANAGEMENT: Calendar management is another one that could give you back so much. Every little interruption that comes with managing your schedule is an interruption to your workflow. Clear the time you take for low level tasks like a calendar entry.

 

DATA ENTRY & FILING: Data entry and filing are two tasks that, though important, are time consuming. More importantly, they can be performed by anyone in the business, leaving you free for more important tasks.

 

TASK DOCUMENTATION: And finally, task documentation. It’s so important to know that you don’t need to be the one documenting all the tasks. Get your employees to make videos while you train them, then use those to build the bank of your resources up. 

 

In your business, with so many things to occupy your time, the last thing you need to be doing is wiping down benches, cleaning toilets or vacuuming floors. Someone else can do that work and it could give you back an hour or two every day. When you are managing a business, delegating the repetitive lower level tasks will be an important step towards growing your business further.

 

Do your business systems work to grow your business?

2 MIN READ

Double handling of business information is a costly waste of time and energy. It undermines the company’s bottom line in misspent wages and redundant effort. When customers experience the ineffectiveness of such processes and the havoc they can create, there is a potential risk of them having an unpleasant encounter with the business. This will not only prevent their return but also stop them from referring the business to those in their circle.

The emotional experience of such waste can also be incredibly frustrating for staff as well. Mistakes are more easily made when those reworking the same bundle of files or information across several different places become bored and/or confused. Additionally, using ineffective systems that waste the teams’ time can send a message that their time is not truly valuable to the company. Ultimately, it can result in staff disengagement which in turn, can lead to high turnover and additional causes for poor customer service.

94% of problems in business are systems driven and only 6% are people driven” W. Edwards Deming

All of this will stymie the satisfaction of the owner, the fulfillment of team members, the confidence of suppliers and contractors, and the growth of the business.

How can I tell if my business systems are on track?

A business with well-integrated systems flows. Pathways for information are smooth and efficient, putting the data people need to work well right at their fingertips. Software which transmits data automatically makes error almost impossible, saving time, reducing frustration, and increasing engagement. If you have met this item in your business you likely have a dedicated systems management person in-house, or you have outsourced this vital business function to an expert service provider.

What do I need to stay on track with my business tech?

Having step by step instructions documented to ensure all members of the team always use the most effective way to gather and administer business data will ensure it’s handled well right from the start. Then having technology systems integrated to ensure this data is managed automatically will create the positive outcomes you’re looking for in your business. If you are like most business owners, you won’t be a tech whizz. See out assistance to map out what is happening now in your data management processes, then get them to help you map out how you want things to run. Then pass that plan onto someone with the technical know how to implement it into your business.

 

Process improvement Melbourne Vic

When Chasing Sales Costs You Money

2 MIN READ

There will be times when the pursuit of sales can actually cost your business money. 

 

This might seem a bit of a strange thing to say, as we know that both survival and growth in your business rely on increasing profits.  Of course, we need to become really savvy at attracting those sales, but often this drive for increasing profits may equate to chasing sales and the exclusion of other areas of your business management. 

 

Process improvement Melbourne Vic

“Manage the cause, not the result.” W.E Deming

In fact, driving sales growth is so attractive to business owners, global study actually showed that less than one-quarter of the small businesses surveyed had a dedicated process improvement plan in place. Now that absolutely blows my mind! Without improving processes, it does stand to reason that your capacity for growth will at some point hit a wall. Prioritising sales over systems will create guaranteed bottlenecks

 

Well, that’s exactly what we’re going to talk about today, the areas affected when we don’t have a good balance of sales mixed in, with a sustained dedication to the development of systems. 

 

YOU RUN OUT OF ENERGY FOR SALES: So firstly, you will run out of energy. If you don’t have systems sustaining your sales process, both for you and your team, you will become exhausted. It is really hard to chase around after individual clients, it’s really hard to generate individual leads, and it’s really difficult to service individual sales. And if your sales processes are relying on you making the effort, then you’re in big trouble and it cannot last. 

 

YOU RUN OUT OF TIME FOR SALES: It’s also time-consuming, and you will run out of time. There are only 24 hours in the day, and your calendar can only fit so many appointments with clients or customers, and this is not sustainable in any way. This ultimately means you start running out of time to fit everyone in, and when there are no minutes left in the day, you will find that you’re not able to continue to grow your sales and the cracks will start to show. 

 

YOU RUN OUT OF CAPACITY FOR SALES: And then finally, you’re running out of capacity. This is meant in a structural sense in your business and what you are seeking to provide. When you run out of capacity you will not have the time to service your sales, you will not have the infrastructure to service your sales, and you’ll not have the physical space or resource to service those sales. There are only so many sales you can process, and you will find it harder to deliver on the promises you have made.  


It is valuable to think about what can you do to develop systems that will sustain your growth so that you’re running a business that can grow without you. These systems will increase your capacity in line with your growth and increasing sales. If you try to grow without building the structures needed to support that growth, you will provide less of a service than what you promised, which is exactly what we want to avoid!

 

Small business training Melbourne CBD

A Caution For Those Too Busy To Build Their Systems

3 MIN READ

Surprisingly, 85% of businesses don’t have documented systems and processes. The most common reason I hear for this is that the business owners are simply too busy, with too many other urgent priorities that are taking their time and attention. They feel they do not have the time to lay down some solid processes or systems. While this is understandable, if it’s not made the number one priority then it is really a self-fulfilling prophecy that you won’t have enough time, because you don’t have a plan to make the time. 

 

Here are a few things that are likely to happen if you don’t prioritise the development of your systems and processes:

 

Small business training Melbourne CBD

“If you don’t have time to do it right [with systems] you must have time to do it over” (Author Unknown).

BURNING OUT YOUR PEOPLE: Firstly, you’ll be burning your people out, and you’ll be burning out yourself as well. This is because you will be so completely exhausted from working too long, and too hard, but you’ll also be putting more pressure on those people around you. This includes your family, friends and loved ones who want quality time with you, and the people that you’re relying on in your teams to pull everything together. 

 

MAXING OUT YOUR CAPACITY: Unless you develop systems and processes, the next thing that will happen is that you’ll max out the capacity of your business to grow and make an impact. There are only so many hours in the day and if you don’t have a plan to make the most of those hours, working effectively and productively, you simply limit the capacity that your business has to be successful and to make a real difference. 

 

LIMITING YOUR VISION: You’ll also be limiting your own vision, you know when you’re working flat out and you’re stressed you’re exhausted. You’re burned out, and it’s very difficult to see anything other than the most urgent fires that are burning. Investing the time to build your systems and processes will actually grant you the extra time that you need, to gain a more complete vision of what you want to achieve, and to then put plans in place to actually achieve that vision. 

 

CAPPING YOUR PROFITS: The next thing that can happen is that your profits will be capped. This is related to maxing out your capacity, again, there are only so many hours in the day. And when you’ve maxed out on the way that you operate, so that you can’t do any more work or create any more output, then, of course, you can’t be selling more. Not having those systems and processes will put a limit on the amount of profit that you can make and the difference that you can extend into the world.

 

BLOCKING BUSINESS GROWTH: All of these problems will, of course, lead to you blocking your own business growth. Because when you run out of time and your staff are burned out, you naturally limit your business growth potential. By capping your profits, your business growth will stall, and a healthy business needs the potential for growth. This is one of the most important reasons why your systems and processes need to be addressed in your business.

 

Whilst running my own business I’ve seen that business process management can feel very time consuming, and yet without it, these problems will continue to reoccur. It may feel like you have hit a natural plateau, but I strongly encourage you to look around your business, keep what’s working well now and find what needs to be cleaned up. It all starts with developing processes for increased efficiency and increased output, to make more out of the time that you have, and gain more out of the resources you possess. 

 

Small business training Melbourne Vic

How To Delegate Successfully In Your Business

3 MIN READ

More than three in four or 77% of business owners have said they feel the effects of burnout at work, and when an overwhelming 86% work on weekends and 53% work on major holidays, this comes as no surprise. Having spoken a lot with business owners, a common theme is struggling to clear the work off their desk, and yet when I asked them if they’ve gotten help, they always describe the struggle that they have with finding someone reliable and competent. 33% said they can’t fill an opening and another 23% stated that finding the right person is the “single most important business problem”.

 

Delegation is a massive factor in streamlining your business and improving your own quality of life. Getting the right help is integral to this, but training all of your staff effectively, as well as being clear about tasks given, are vital too. Here are some practical tips to get you as a business owner delegating more successfully.

 

Small business training Melbourne Vic

“If you really want to grow as an entrepreneur, you’ve got to learn to delegate.” Richard Branson

LEADERS MINDSET: The first thing is developing the mindset of a leader, or creating a mindset shift in yourself. This will move you from being an operator, where you are the bottleneck of your business, through to being the person who is more like the traffic controller, directing projects and managing staff who are performing really well. Being a good leader requires letting go, not having your thumb in every single pie, and it requires trusting that the people that you’ve employed are going to do a great job and not need to be micromanaged. 

 

OPTIMISE TASKS: Once you’ve got yourself into a great mindset space, it’s important that you utilise the most effective way of doing the tasks that you’re going to delegate. There is absolutely no point bringing on new team members and clearing your desk of work, only to multiply the inefficiencies and chaos that have already been happening. You need to make sure the way you’re setting up the tasks that they’re efficient, that they’re productive, and that it’s creating excellent results. Concentrate on doing this every single time without wasting time, money and resources. 

 

DELEGATION TOOLS: Once you found the best way to perform the tasks required, you then need to  develop your delegation tools. These tools let your new employees work with independence, without coming back to you asking questions or needing fixes. Develop a bank of resources such as instructional videos, documented instructions, checklists and templates, then set up these sorts of tools so that your team can work independently. This will give them such a sense of reward and fulfillment in their work, and you’ll be able to let go of that work.

 

MAINTAIN ACCOUNTABILITY: And then finally, even though you’re going to have a team that is working well without you, they need to be held accountable for producing excellent results. This looks like having systems set up to check in with your team, to monitor their performance, and to make sure that they’re being given the rewards that they earned when they do a great job. It will also enable you to provide the support that they need when they’re struggling. Keeping your team accountable is a vital aspect of long term, successful delegation. 


Delegation will play an important role in easing the pressure you face personally, and in growing your business in a positive and sustainable way. In a recent study it was found that 53 percent of business owners believe that they can grow their business by more than 20 percent if they delegate 10 percent of their workload to someone else. Such potential is yours to exploit! 

 

Hide And Seek

2 MIN READ

The small business scene in Australia is filled with people working their industry magic behind closed doors. 61% of our small business owners are registered sole traders, dedicated to building the business of their dreams no matter how daunting or challenging the task might feel. Nearly one million small business owners run their business from home, pursuing their passion on a shoestring. These entrepreneurial soldiers draw resourcefulness and resilience from deep in their core to expand their business reach far and wide. The vision of these heroes is so gripping that the idea of not living to follow this passion is simply inconceivable. They’ve already seen the impact their business can have in their mind’s eye, and they know they will press through to world-changing impact no matter what.

Process Improvement Consultant

“Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us” Marianne Williamson

Australia is a funny place. We celebrate wins together and respect the bloke who has a strong work ethic, but we have a nasty tendency to cut down those who dare to shine in dedicated excellence and outstanding achievement. We will cheer the underdog on till our throats become hoarse, but a niggly little cultural button is pressed for us when someone gets a little “too big for their boots”. Sometimes, the bloke charging to the top of the stack can only continue the mission amidst the disgruntled objections of his peers. “He’s forgotten where he came from … He’s up himself … We’re not good enough for him any more.”

Perhaps this is why so many small business owners tuck themselves and their mission away out of sight. You will see them at networking events shaking hands and sipping on champagne, and they’ll happily tell you how they’ve travelled so for.  It’s easy to share small wins with your Australian peers, and even easier to describe the obstacles and hardships beyond your control. These conversations are a dime a dozen and fit perfectly within our egalitarian sense of mateship and support. It is another thing entirely to stand in the fullness of your passion, taking ownership of the dream that has captured your heart, and boldly declaring that you have ambitions for your business that set you apart.

I am searching for this tribe, and they are coming out from their faceless place in the crowd. You will know you are part of this tribe if:

• You have goals for your business that are so big they even scare you sometimes.

• You have a local business that you imagine rolling out nationally and even globally

• You hesitate to share your business dreams because you don’t want to stand out and you fear being misunderstood

• You push forward in pursuit even though you are not quite sure of the exact steps you need to take

• You are certain you can back yourself despite not having conquered the mountains ahead

• You are convinced that you will prevail over any adversity, trial or hardship

• You have realised that the person who will complete the mission is the one you are becoming

Sole Trader, you are an inspiration. Keep learning. Keep stretching. Keep reaching. Plan for growth. Build the structures. Expand the systems. Your success is my greatest passion.

Business Management Consultant

10 Quotes to Boost Your Business Mindset for 2018

4 MIN READ

Our words are connected to our power. In fact, these two parts of ourselves are tied so closely that I would call them inseparable. Both the words we say to ourselves, and the words we say out loud to others, direct us through life like a rudder on a ship. Proverbs says that the power of life and death is in our tongue, and Ghandi says “A man is but the product of his thoughts. What he thinks, he becomes.” This means that our power is our words … In fact, it means our words have so much power that we actually become them.

  1. Learn to say no to the good and say yes to the best. – John C. Maxwell

Making room for growth in every area involves setting clear boundaries that we enforce with an iron fist. Make room for more high-quality Yesses by being discerning with what we accept. Saying no is a skill of empowerment.

2. Patience is the art of concealing your impatience.  – Guy Kawasaki

I have a personal policy of Productive Waiting. I’m not naturally patient, but I make the most of every moment by finding things I can do with the delay along the way. Even if this investment is made only into my mind set, it’s a valuable one to make.

Business Management Consultant

We are ready for new business outcomes when we write a new script for our self talk

3. Learn to work harder on yourself than you do on your job. – Jim Rohn

My Meetup group tagline says it all: “Growing People Grow Business.” We won’t get very far at all in this marathon we call business building unless we are set on being brutally honest with ourselves and how we are travelling. Shining a brave spotlight on your thoughts, motives and feelings to is a fast track to major growth in all areas.

4.Givers have to set limits because takers rarely do. – Henry Ford

It’s all about giving sustainably. If you say yes to this person’s request, how many others will it cause you to be unavailable for. We need to be shrewd with our calendar and ruthless with our time if we are going to stretch out our business influence far and wide.

5. Quality is the best business plan. – John Lasseter

The cream rises to the top. Making a solid commitment to consistently deliver your highest possible standards will elevate you to the stop of the track more quickly than any other approach. There are few things that shine more brightly than excellence.

6. The road to success is always under construction. – Lily Tomlin

This commitment to excellence must be tempered with a gracious acceptance of the fact that we never truly “arrive” Our best in this season will certainly not be the best we can achieve in the next, so balancing ourselves between pursuit of “more” with acceptance of “enough” is the way to go.

7. There’s a big difference between a satisfied customer and a loyal customer. Never settle for “satisfied”. – Shep Hyken

When our businesses are built on the solid foundation of authentic, quality relationships, we will grow from strength to strength. From this platform we enjoy quality referrals, raving testimonials, and repeat business from clients who can’t get enough. Best of all though is the satisfaction of knowing we are building our empire on the foundations of respect and integrity

8. By changing nothing, nothing changes. – Anthony Robbins

If we are in any business we are in the business of change. Changing technologies, products, markets, consumer demands, economic climates, and popular culture. At the heart of all of this must lie a commitment to change within ourselves. We constantly evolve to become the best version of ourselves that we can possibly be, then rise again to greater heights in the next round of growth.

9. Things may come to those who wait, but only the things left by those who hustle. – Abraham Lincoln

Some seasons are mastered simply by grabbing the bull by the horns and saying”The buck stops with me.” I am convinced that if we have knocked and kept on knocking on the doors of our passions, and the door is not yet open, it’s time to pull out the battering ram.

10. What is done in love is done well. – Vincent Van Gogh

If you’re anything like me you’ve chosen this business life because you want to do everything you can to pour your love gift out to as many people as possible. We work strategically do this as fast as we can on the tightest budget possible to build an offering that is bigger than ourselves.

Who we are and how we travel through life’s journey hangs on the power of our words. Truly knowing this as a transforming reality is empowerment defined. We all share the same superpower: Our words create reality. Let’s choose words of Life! Freedom! Success! Joy! Courage! Health! Growth! Let’s use our words to create our own personalised experience of Unstoppable Freedom

* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

If this article has struck a chord with you, please go right ahead and message me. I would love to hear more about what you do, and how I might be able to help you transform your business into the Freedom Machine you have wanted all along. Let’s establish a proven system in your business to create team certainty and sustainable expansion which open pathways to the lifestyle choices you’ve worked so hard for. No matter where you are, I am only a message away.

Why You Started Your Business

3 MIN READ

Freedom is often a driving motivator for the start up business owner. You know you’re an expert who changes people’s lives, so you don’t want to give your product or services away to an employer or reseller who will steal your thunder and take all your hard earned reward for themselves. If you wanted stability, security and the predictable rise of climbing the corporate ladder, you’d be working for someone else right now. You chose to be in business because you see the promise of bigger financial returns, greater professional impact, and more personal satisfaction. All of these things make your business the tool you’ve chosen to give you freedom with your time, money, and lifestyle choices.

If you serve your business, Your business will serve you.

It’s understandable then that so many small business owners resist working to a routine. If freedom is your driver, the last thing you want to do with your days is bind yourself to a repetitive timetable of processes. Why would you exchange all of that promise of free-spirited liberty for something so mundane as an unmoving schedule? From where you’re sitting now, this seems boring, it kills your creativity, and it binds up the passionate flow that got you started in the first place. I’ll tell you why …

The brutal reality is this: Most small businesses don’t make it through their first five years because they are fighting a losing battle with three core pillars of business management:

  1. Strategic Management
  2. Cashflow
  3. Financial Record Keeping

Studies consistently show that the passion you have for your core business offering is not enough to make you different from your startup peers. You need to have a passion not only for YOUR business, but for business itself. If you want to enjoy the freedom that your small business can bring you, you must embrace the need for discipline and structure. You must invest in building growth frameworks which keep a tight rein on your money and time. You must have a clearly defined strategy for building sales and keeping them on the up and up. You must know your numbers and monitor them routinely. If you can get this balance just right, three incredible things will happen:

It won’t seem boring: Your interest and engagement in your business will skyrocket

When you measure your performance, devise a plan to improve that performance, then collect the data to prove you really are kicking big goals with your targets, you will become hungry for more. The wins that were never experienced or previously hidden will suddenly be visible and you will have cause to celebrate. The confidence and conviction you’ll develop as a business owner will have you walking tall and attracting more and more success to yourself.

It won’t kill your creativity: You will have a new energy for creation and expansion

With all of those wins under your belt, and a more efficient workflow, you’ll know that time is on your side. You’ll feel the refreshing rise of new ideas, invention and opportunity. Passion projects that you had shelved will be pulled out, and you will see a domino effect of success roll out right before your eyes. People will stop and look at what’s happening in your neck of the woods, and they will want a slice of all this positive action too. Fresh seasons of imagination will thrive in the stable structures you’ve built.

It won’t bind up your flow: Your love of business itself will fuel new passion for the impact you can make

Taking part in this kind of expansion will remind you of the impact you had always hoped that you would have with your business. It might seem far fetched now, but please believe me. I know from experience that squaring away your routines and ticking all of your administrative boxes creates wide open spaces for your business to have a real effect. Try to picture what it would be like to flow in the fulfillment of your business potential, leading the field in your industry, and joining with others to make waves that ripple for generations to come.

Isn’t this why you started your business?

If I Die

4 MIN READ

I am overwhelmingly aware that I’m an involuntary member of a very diverse, vulnerable, human club. People never join this club willingly, yet its members are true heroes who soldier on in courageous love and sensitive support of those around them. This club is made up of the people who have lost their beloved and who will always carry a drop of grief in their heart. This grief emerges in surprising ways for each unique club member. But all of us know it and all of us need to deal with it, in one way or another. This time of year is festive for most, but hellish for many who have suffered the recent loss of a loved one. I apologise for bursting your bubble here, but for just a moment I would like to get honest and real about some of the practicalities of the season. There some things that must be pulled out from the shadows.

I have a folder in my filing cabinet called “If I Die.” I’ve put all of the sorts of things in there that I wish my late husband had provided for me when he passed away unexpectedly in May 2014. Over these next few weeks, most of us will enjoy a festive break from our work, and some will be lucky enough to shut up shop altogether. I urge you to invest some of this time into reflecting on just how much you care for your loved ones, and the circumstance they would be left in if you were suddenly gone. After the gifts have been unwrapped, the turkey carved, and the pavlova consumed, please pull this little article back out and set up your own folder. Include these items listed here so that your loved ones would have the support they need. If the worst actually happened, the last thing you would want them to deal with is the messiness of wading through an unprepared business end of the situation.

1. Update your Will

If you don’t have one, make an appointment with your solicitor and have a will drawn up in the new year. At the very least, jump online and download a free version so that you have something in writing to help your loved ones manage your affairs if they need to. If you have children who depend on you, regardless of their age, you should have a plan for their care if you meet unexpected tragedy. When you look at their beautiful faces this Christmas, remember they will rely on you for this plan even if you are gone.

2. Enduring Power of Guardianship

If you were suddenly not well enough to make your own decisions, who would make them for you? If you could no longer make choices about your work, living arrangements, health care … who would step in for you? Nominate the person you trust in writing.

3. Enduring Power of Attorney – Financial

If something happened that made you unable to manage your own finances, someone else would need to do that for you. Ensure your intentions are clear and legally binding by nominating in writing and having a witness sign too

4. Enduring Power of Attorney – Medical

While our mortality is an uncomfortable reality that is difficult to face, it is also horrible to think that we may find ourselves alive but unable to manage our own health. Discuss this possibility with a loved one and if they agree to stand in your place, get it in writing.

5. Use a password keeper like LastPass or 1Password

The only reason I could access most of my late husbands profiles and accounts is that I happened to know most of his passwords. Some remain locked to this day, over three years later. Store them securely online and document the Master Password safely.

6. Give your trusted loved one access to all of your online places – google drive / dropbox, emails, passwords, website logins

My daughter, my assistant and my current partner Rod all have access to all of my online accounts and profiles. They would be able to act immediately if required to manage my affairs and smooth the transition should something untoward happen to me.

7. Compile these insurances: Life Insurance, Superannuation, Funeral Insurance, Life insurance with private healthcare

For a relatively brief period of investing into these administrative tasks, you and your loved ones will enjoy the ongoing security of knowing that the insurances you need are in place to ensure they are provided for if the worst happened. Just imagine if you didn’t …

8. Update the beneficiaries of your insurances

It’s one thing to have the insurances in place but entirely another to have your details up to date and the details of your beneficiaries. You can guarantee that things would run as smoothly as possible if these insurances were claimed by keeping them updated.

9. Ensure that your Next of Kin is the person you want managing your affairs

If you write your best friend as your next of kin at your doctor or dentist, this gives them a legally enforceable voice if tragedy struck. Consider who you’ve nominated in your Will and  Power of Attorney documents to ensure your preferred carers can do their job.

10. Organ donor registration with Medicare and on your Drivers Licence

If this is your preference ensure it is clearly specified and documented. I carry my organ donor card in my wallet at all times because I would hate for precious moments of delay or confusion to mean the loss of benefit to another person in need of my healthy organs.

11. Funeral plans: Songs, texts, special people, broadcast online

Making plans for a funeral you never expected is a sad, dark task filled with overwhelming sorrow. Make it just a little smoother for those you love by writing up a few of the things you would like to be included. I know this would have been comforting for us.

12. Letters to loved ones

When he was gone, he was gone forever. The last thing he ever wrote to me was an email about a project we were working on with our website developer. None of us got a goodbye or farewell. Closure was ours to find ourselves. Write your last words of love and update them annually so that your people will have something to have and to hold until they too draw their last breath.

What To Do When Your Business Is Running You

3 MIN READ

For years I have been in one business or another. I started out selling vacuum cleaners door to door, which then took my husband and I to a Godfreys franchise, then our own small appliance repair centre, then we moved our operations to online retail, selling vacuum cleaner spare parts online from several different platforms as we outgrew each one. Along the way I became a teacher too, graduating with honours and moving to work in primary schools, high schools, and special ed. This opened opportunities for me to  train beginning teachers at university level too. I have been a busy girl! For as long as I can remember I have managed multiple pots on the boil and made progress in it all by committing first to excellence in management. Our time is our most precious resource.

When you are run off your feet chasing your business around, It is time to put yourself back in the driver’s seat.

So many business people struggle with the management of their work and run themselves ragged trying to keep their thumb in all of the different business pies at once. When people say they are having trouble running their business, what they really need is to learn how to streamline their daily management processes. It is important to realise that problems with the running of the business will affect lead generation, sales, cash flow and staffing. It is easy to jump the gun at this point and think that better staff, more money or more work will solve the problem, but let me tell you from experience that chasing these fixes will be a recipe for disaster. Business management is the umbrella that holds it all together and this is where the gains need to be made. Here are some key aspects of successful business management that will help you through:

FOCUS: Clarify the one thing you do in your business, and direct all your resources to that end. Time. Money. Physical resources. If you sell widgets, then your business is selling widgets. It’s not writing about selling widgets or telling people you sell widgets. Advertising, marketing and promotions are all vital for you to sell those widgets, but they are not your business. Keep the horse in front of the cart.

CLARIFY: Get rid of all peripheral activities. Clear your calendar of unnecessary appointments and abort projects that don’t get you where you want to be going. Unsubscribe all irrelevant emails and clean up your work space. If you are brave enough you might even consider detoxing your social circle by making choices to spend the most time with the people who contribute to your growth and well being.

CREATE ROUTINES: A big portion of your work is repetitive and like the proverbial “women’s work”, it is never done. Set your morning routine by creating a checklist of all of the ongoing tasks that will always need to be attended to. Jobs like email management, social media notifications, phone messages, opening mail etc can be done in a super fast daily routine if you have a list you work every morning to clear your mind and your desk.

GROUP TASKS: Most of the tasks you do are similar or the same in nature. Group them together and allocate a set time for them. Monday mornings for me are pays, accounting, super, bills and invoicing. Monday afternoons are for writing my blog, guest blogging for others and creating social media posts. This means I only do those tasks on those days or at the allocated time. This approach can be applied to content creation, filing, development of promotions and advertising, and meetings.

DOCUMENT: Invest time in creating detailed manuals for the repetitive tasks you do. These should be complete with every step of the task and screen shots or photos. Do Not Miss One Step. Every login, mouse click, and field to complete must be included. These documents will allow you to get help from someone else sooner rather than later. Better than this though, they will eventually become the comprehensive documentation that adds immeasurable value to a future buyer of your business. Make these as you go, right then and there, to make your connection with the job authentic.

SYSTEMISE: There are software programs, apps, and websites that will take care of many tasks you might be doing manually right now. Advance schedule emails, social media posts, and reminders with software. Put everything in the calendar you carry around with you in your phone. Everything. Organize your workflow with project software and manage your data storage and sharing with cloud tools. Do your accounting, pay your bills, and even manage your health and well being with apps that lead the way for you.  It’s time to move towards new ways of managing your work.